• Naturally discreet, Kevin Gameiro gave

    20 Minutes

    a long interview.

  • The pocket center forward talks about his return to Strasbourg, Ligue 1, the players who have marked him during his fifteen-year career, etc.

  • “I came to Strasbourg because there was a nice little project with a coach who offers football.

    It was ideal for me, I always try to choose my teams according to the style of play, ”he explains.

Control of the left foot, right hook and devastating strike in the nets of Omlin ... In Montpellier in early October (1-1), Kevin Gameiro recalled why he was one of the great French scorers of the last decade.

Since his return this summer to RC Strasbourg, thirteen years after leaving his training club, the striker has not achieved miracles.

There were also failed duels, as against Troyes or in Lyon, and even a passage on the bench, against Metz.

The center-forward knows it and doesn't care.

In Alsace, he says he has

"

rediscovered this thirst for football

"

and does not hide his pleasure.

You have a smile, it seems to be going well ...

I always have a smile!

I feel good here, I enjoy the field, the fun I can have with the team.

There is a very good atmosphere in this group and in this club.

I do not regret my choice at all.

What conclusions do you draw from your first matches?

You have two goals in nine days ...

There should be more.

I am a striker, a goalscorer, it's up to me to finish the actions and miss as little as possible.

I will always miss it, these are the vagaries of the job, but we must not take the lead.

I have the experience to approach these passages more calmly.

You have just returned to Ligue 1 eight years after leaving it.

What do you think of the championship?

I find that there are a lot more teams playing football, even those who have just started.

They try to get the ball out from behind, to create a good game. Previously, in my opinion, it was more based on physicality and commitment.

It's nice and I think it's also linked to these young coaches who offer football a little more focused on possession.

It doesn't always pay off, but you can't give up.

This is the right solution for seeing great matches and for us players to have fun.

In a recent interview, Lionel Messi spoke of a Ligue 1 that is much more physical than La Liga.

You confirm ?

Yes, there is less space, it is harder on the man.

In the contacts, some do not deprive themselves here!

I know, that doesn't shock me, but for those who are new to it… In Spain, there are many more small sizes that precisely avoid these shocks.

I'm part of it and I'm not going to change my game to fit.

It has always been part of my qualities to move well in the free zones and to be one or two meters from the defender to avoid contact.

Now, if I have to go, I'll go, no problem!

How have you adapted, since you started your career in 2005, to evolve and remain as efficient as ever?

With age you understand football a little better and try to play a little differently.

A few years ago, it was rare to see me take down in nine and a half or ten to ask for the ball and play the team.

I try to adapt to the game and to my body.

Of course, I lost things, from a physical point of view, but I gained others.

I came to Strasbourg because there was a nice little project with a coach who offers football.

It was ideal for me, I always try to choose my teams according to the style of play.

It was still seen in training earlier, you seem to be with Ludovic Ajorque ...

I think we are very complementary with him or Habib (Diallo).

Their style is more to play pivot and keep the ball and me, rather to walk between the lines and take the depth.

Now they work well together too!

I think all of this will help us progress.

For a coach, it's good to have three good forwards and for us, it's good to get out of the way.

In your opinion, is Ludovic Ajorque still far from the France team?

It is up to him to continue to do the work.

He remains on a very good season and has a profile quite different from the players called up at the moment, with a style à la Giroud.

This is what can tip the scales even if there are a lot of people already.

He has to score goals and I hope to help him do it.

And you, how do you see your career in Blue (13 caps)?

The regret, it is perhaps not to have made big international competitions (he was reservist for Euro-2016).

Now I think there were good reasons why I wasn't.

It doesn't prevent me from sleeping at night.

I tried to do the maximum for my international career and had a great time with the France team.

During your fifteen years of career, have any players marked you?

There are many ... Ibrahimovic at PSG, Griezmann at Atletico, Carlos Bacca in Sevilla.

I also think of Ever Banega, who was exceptional and didn't have the career he should have.

After that, where I learned the most was when I saw Ljuboja, Niang and Pagis here.

I was at the training center and I saw the three playing.

It was a treat as they had very different qualities and were very complementary.

To talk about Strasbourg again, how did you find Racing thirteen years after your departure?

He is like before!

It remains a family club, with beautiful things established by Marc (Keller, the president) since he took it over.

It's exceptional to see Racing where it is today when you know where it fell (in CFA 2 in 2011).

And now, it would be nice to take an extra step.

This is also why I came here.

Have you always had the idea of ​​coming back?

I'm not going to lie: it was not the number one goal. But it has always been a wish to be able to play here again.

It was done because there was a project, people who showed their interest.

It's always better to feel wanted.

I had touches in several championships, very financially interesting offers ... But I needed to find full stadiums and fun on the pitch.

Last year, I had lost all that a bit in Valencia.

Did you refuse OM this summer?

Yes, the offer was there.

It's a personal choice and if I hadn't played in Strasbourg before, maybe I wouldn't have signed there.

I have ties here.

Marseille is a special context, especially for a former Parisian.

I repeat: I have no regrets.

Alsace, is it also a lifestyle choice for your post-career?

Not especially !

I admit that I enjoyed my Spanish years a lot, and so did my family.

I think I still have a few years of football to live, I want to make the most of it.

I am only 34 years old and we can see that some perform even older!

I rediscovered this thirst for football.

What keeps you going is precisely this passion.

If mentally, you don't feel like it anymore, it's no longer possible.

Are you a real football fan?

I was much more so when I started out.

Now I'm more detached even though I still enjoy training and playing games as much as I can.

Out of that, I would rather choose a good movie than football, except for the big posters.

I have my family, my children, other things on the side that interest me because I also think about my post-career.

Do you already own a 5-a-side football complex in the suburbs of Strasbourg, have invested in real estate… What exactly will your retraining look like?

The KG5 (the famous Five) has been working well for eight years and we are considering opening another one rather in the south of the city.

We'll see.

I'm also trying to create a real estate portfolio for myself, yes.

All that interests me.

Of course, I don't see myself continuing in football once I'm no longer a player.

I will need to breathe and find some quiet weekends.

But maybe I'll miss it!

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Keywords: striker, kevin gameiro, playing.it, ludovic ajorque, players, teams, minutesa, coach, career, atmosphere, return, ligue 1, all, rc strasbourg, interview